“On 27th October the South East Midlands Enterprise Partnership (SEMLEP) held a Summit about the infrastructure needed to underpin growth in this region. Jane Hamilton , The Chair of BMKWPT, joined speakers from the Treasury, Network Rail, Highways England and the Institute of Economic Development amongst others to make the case that the Waterway Park should be seen as essential in its role of supporting growth in the region. Jane and James Clifton from the Canal and River Trust argued that, unlike the other road and rail schemes which were being discussed and which were designed to get you from A to B more quickly, the waterway park would be a 23km destination in its own right and as such it would bring:
- economic benefits through increased tourism and investment in facilities such as hotels, pubs, marinas etc. along the route as well as the opportunity for a tourist attraction at Brogborough Hill
- health benefits by providing opportunities for people to get out and walk, cycle, run, horse ride, engage in a range of water based sports and just enjoy the area with their families
- an opportunity to manage and move water across the region, as well as increasing biodiversity by linking greenspace and wetlands
- create a sense of place for new developments so that people moving into the region to new homes near the Waterway Park felt they could identify with the area.
Jane also joined a panel discussion with the Chief Executive of the National Infrastructure Commission and other speakers where the theme of using the waterway for “placemaking” was picked up again.”